Category Archives: Men’s Basketball

Slaughter working out in preparation for NBA Draft

Western’s media relations department sent out a release Tuesday on senior guard A.J. Slaughter’s run to the June 24 NBA draft.

Slaughter has worked out with a number of NBA squads and, according to the release, could end up working with as many as 17 teams before the draft.

Although Slaughter told the Herald last month that he had signed with Stu Lash of BEST, the same organization that represents Courtney Lee, the release now lists Slaughter’s agent as Lance Young of Octagon Sports. Young represents players such as Chris Paul, Stephen Curry and Rudy Gay.

Former Western standout Tyrone Brazelton is also under the Octagon umbrella.

To read the release in full, click here.

-Jonathan Lintner

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Statement from former WKU coach David Boyden

The university released this statement from former assistant basketball coach David Boyden. It was announced Thursday that Boyden would not return to coach the Toppers for the 2010-2011 season.

“I am thankful for the time that I have been able to spend at WKU. Bowling Green will always be home for me. Thank you to the fans that make WKU basketball the best program in the country. Thank you to the players who have made so many sacrifices to make WKU great.”

Head Coach Ken McDonald released a statement Thursday that said Boyden had “already interviewed for one college basketball assistant coaching position, and he will continue the interview process in the coming weeks.”

No firm reason was given for Boyden’s exit.

Jonathan Lintner

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David Boyden not returning to WKU basketball staff

This per WKU media relations:

Assistant Basketball Coach David Boyden will not be returning to the staff for the 2010-11 season, WKU announced today. Boyden has served as an assistant coach the last two seasons. Boyden was hired by WKU Head Coach Ken McDonald in April of 2008 after serving as an assistant coach at Eastern Kentucky University from 2005-08.

“David has already interviewed for one college basketball assistant coaching position, and he will continue the interview process in the coming weeks,” McDonald said. “We thank him for the sacrifices and contributions he has given our basketball program both as a player and as an assistant coach. We wish him the best in what will be a long and successful coaching career.”

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BASKETBALL: Topper, Lady Topper recruiting notes

Head Coach Ken McDonald turned heads at Thursday night’s awards banquet when he said he expects to see eight fresh faces on the court for Western next season.

McDonald will already add Juan Patillo and Teeng Akol, transfers who are currently sitting out the NCAA’s required one year. Western also signed a pair of junior college guards — Ken Brown and Kahlil McDonald — last week as part of the NCAA’s Regular Signing Period. Those four add on to Stephon Drane, Kene Anyigbo and Brandon Peters, who each signed last November.

But who’s No. 8?

“You never know — you media guys always want to know the ins and outs,” McDonald said. “Stay tuned.”

McDonald pointed out that although the Regular Signing Period ends May 19, recruiting season never truly stops throughout the summer. Case in point: McDonald signed freshman guard Jamal Crook very late in the game before the 2009-2010 season.

Meanwhile, Head Coach Mary Taylor Cowles said her lucky number is 13 — the number of scholarships she’s seeking to fill for her Lady Topper team next season.

After learning senior forward Arnika Brown will be granted another scholarship, Cowles now sits at 11 scholarships. Mercy Academy (Louisville) guards Therese Montano and Ellen Sholtes were both in attendence at Thursday’s banquet.

“We’re very hopeful in this late signing that we can add one or two more to our roster,” Cowles said. “Some people talk about the No. 13 — I think it can be really lucky, so we’re going to put all those efforts together late in this signing and hopefully have really good news and then just get ourselves refocused and ready for the fall.”

Montano is currently committed to Bellarmine University but told the Herald on Monday she’s starting to consider signing with Western.

Brown’s paperwork almost done

Cowles said she expects to have no problems in finishing senior forward Arnika Brown’s paperwork, which will grant her an official release from her scholarship at Kentucky.

“I think when we talk about paperwork at this point, I think it’s more of the formality of they need to sign here and she needs to sign here, and then it needs to get submitted to the NCAA office,” Cowles said.

Cowles said conversations to give Brown another year at Western were done exclusively through Athletics Director Wood Selig — who said his last day at Western will be May 5 — and Kentucky Athletics Director Mitch Barnhart.

“Just a big thank you to Kentucky for taking that stand and allowing Arnika to have that opportunity,” Cowles said.

Jonathan Lintner

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BASKETBALL: Awards banquet wrapup

For the first time, the Topper and Lady Topper basketball programs came together as one for their postseason awards banquet on Thursday night.

In front of players, families and fans, head coaches Ken McDonald and Mary Taylor Cowles designated senior guard A.J. Slaughter as the men’s Most Valuable Player and now-junior forward Arnika Brown as the women’s MVP.

2009-10 Topper Award Winners:
Clem Haskins Most Valuable Player: AJ Slaughter
E.A. Diddle Award: Steffphon Pettigrew and Sergio Kerusch
Danny Rumph Outstanding Teammate Award: Jeremy Evans
Ralph Crosthwaite Field Goal Accuracy Award: Jeremy Evans
Darel Carrier Free Throw Accuracy Award: AJ Slaughter
Tom Marshall Rebounder of the Year: Sergio Kerusch
Dwight Smith Playmaker of the Year: AJ Slaughter
John Oldham Most Improved Player: Cliff Dixon
Bobby Rascoe Defensive Player of the Year: Steffphon Pettigrew and Jeremy Evans
Dixie Mahurin Academic Award: Caden Dickerson
Jones Family Appreciation Award: Dr. Camden Wood Selig and Family

2009-10 Lady Topper Award Winners:
Most Valuable Player:
Arnika Brown
Most Improved Player: LaTeira Owens
Coach’s Award: Kenzie Rich
Free Throw Accuracy Award: Kenzie Rich

Men’s freshman guard Caden Dickerson didn’t leave his seat once he made it there on crutches. Dickerson had a scheduled knee surgery after 2009-2010 season.

Slaughter and Evans were both absent from the banquet, with McDonald saying they were away working out for professional careers. Also missing were junior forwards Juan Patillo and Cliff Dixon for personal reasons, McDonald said, and senior forward Nemanja Milosevic for a school project.

Transfers William Green and Jameson Tipping were both in attendance.

All Lady Toppers players were accounted for.

Jonathan Lintner

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BASKETBALL: 2011 recruit Gordon awaits November signing period

The Herald caught up with Class of 2011 basketball recruit Derrick Gordon on Friday. He recently made his third visit to campus where he met President Gary Ransdell and many Western students while attending last Saturday’s baseball game.

Gordon, a solid verbal commitment, said the visit was the best of his three so far.

“Everything just went perfectly,” he said. “I got to bond with the coaches a lot more and I just got a real good vibe when I was down there.”

Gordon was able to take the court in multiple pickup games with the Toppers, and he said he played at point guard even though he plays shooting guard for St. Patrick’s High School in Plainfield, N.J.

Gordon said he was able to keep up with the team pretty well despite playing a position that’s relatively unfamiliar to him.

He said although he played point guard in the pickup games, that didn’t necessarily mean that’s what he’d play when he comes to Western. Freshman guards Jamal Crook and Caden Dickerson will still be on the Hill when he arrives, so Gordon said he’d likely remain a shooting guard.

Gordon will officially be able to sign with Western in November during the NCAA’s Early Signing Period — something he said he’s ready to get over with.

“Once I get that out of the way, I won’t have to worry about any other schools calling my phone because I’m committed to Western,” he said. “Once I sign my name on the dotted line, that will be a special day for me.”

Although there’s technically time for Gordon to change his mind before the signing period, he said he doesn’t see that happening.

“My verbal (commitment) is solid,” he said. “I just can’t see myself anywhere else. I’m not going nowhere.”

Gordon told the Herald back in March that he was having doubts about his decision to play at Western, but that his latest visit coupled with several talks with Head Coach McDonald helped remove any doubts he may have been having.

He said the two discussed what each other expects when Gordon arrives and they seemed to come to a consensus.

“I may have had my ups and downs, but they stayed on me, which I wanted them to do,” he said. “They just told me that I’d have to come in and work for everything, which is what I wanted to hear. I don’t want anything given to me – I want to work for everything.

“If they would’ve told me that I would be the starter right away, then that’s when people come in with the mentality that they don’t have to work hard. So I’m kind of glad that he didn’t tell me that and said that I need to work hard when I get there.”

Gordon said there’s a chance that he could make another visit sometime this summer — possibly in June.

His high school season is over but he’ll now compete in AAU tournaments with his team, the Long Island Lightning, based out of New York. Gordon’s team will take the court this weekend at the Pittsburgh Jamfest.

Cole Claybourn

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Recruit Brandon Peters clarification

I can clarify a bit of information I’ve been seeking for a long time now. Brandon Peters, a 6-2, 180-pound guard from Houston, Texas, is signed, and he did so as a member of the NCAA’s Early Signing Period.

There was some apparent confusion between Head Coach Ken McDonald and the media relations department at Western.

In short, Peters signed, but the right people weren’t told. Or so I’m told by Director of Media Relations Brad Fields. Of course Fields couldn’t comment further on Peters the last few weeks because nothing was announced, and Peters’ coach at Houston Yates High School didn’t return multiple phone calls.

But Fields was able to clarify today that Peters did sign during the early period, and Western waited until he could join Ken Brown and Kahlil McDonald in Thursday’s official release.

Jonathan Lintner

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